What Is This?
Is there an application on your Mac whose menu items are lacking keyboard shortcuts? For instance, would it not be easier to add a shortcut to mail for the Save Attachments item, or to iTunes to sync your iOS device, or to Safari to quickly tweet a page? Well, you can do all this, and you need nothing more than a few minutes and System Preferences.
Cool! How Do I Do It?
- Open the application to which you want to add a shortcut. Go to the menu item to which the shortcut will be mapped and note how it is spelled, right down to the punctuation and capitalization. OS10 will match the entry you make in System Preferences with this menu item, so the two must match character for character. Try going to the item and pressing vo-shift-c to copy it to the clipboard for pasting later. Vo may insert an extra space somewhere, but you will get the item's exact spelling and capitalization.
- Now that you have the item, open System Preferences and activate the keyboard button. Select the "keyboard shortcuts" tab, then select "application shortcuts" from the first table in the window. Navigate to and activate the "add application shortcut" button.
- You are in a new dialog. Use the popup menu to select the application to which the shortcut should apply, or select "all applications" if the shortcut is for an item that all apps have in common.
- Move to the "menu title" edit field. This is where you will type and/or paste the name of the option to which to map the shortcut. Again, this entry must precisely match the entry in the app's menus or the shortcut will not work.
- Now move to the "keyboard shortcut" edit field and press the key sequence to act as the shortcut. This (I assume) must include one keyboard character (letters, numbers, punctuation, arrows, and so on) and one or more modifiers (control, option, command, or shift). The shortcut must not conflict with any system-wide or application-specific shortcuts already in place. If it does, you will not get a warning, the shortcut will simply fail to activate your chosen menu item.
- Activate the done button and go try your shortcut. As long as your key sequence does not conflict with any already present, and the text you entered in the "menu title" field exactly matches the item to be activated, the shortcut should work perfectly.